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WPGM Reviews: The Great Escape 2018

So The Great Escape is over for another year and what a weekend it was. Multitudes of talented acts from all over the world headed to Brighton to showcase themselves down at the British Coastline.

We were running around from venue to venue catching some of the hotly tipped breakthrough acts of 2018, as both music industry and festivals lovers flocked their way from the hustle and bustle of their everyday routine for three days of music indulgence which was definitely accompanied by a few pints and G&T’s. I have rounded up my top picks from the weekend and the ones you should look forward to catching over this festival season.

Travelling from across the pond, American singer songwriter BØRNS took to the ‘Coalition’ stage late on Friday evening. In all honesty the sound of the venue disappointed me slightly and it was often hard to hear as clearly as I would have liked.

However, his unique vocals and wonderfully stylish sound combines a multitude of genres; and his effortlessly cool frontman image really brings something fresh. His second album Blue Madonna was released earlier this year and you should definitely check it out.

It is important not to miss Alma off this list. Even though I only managed to catch the second half of her set due to the longest queue outside, [no surprises there] it was still completely worth it. She took to the VEVO stage Thursday evening and it is without a doubt, she is a female force to be reckoned with.

With her fiery personality combined with her flamboyant image, her set was full of pop bangers, finishing with her breakthrough track “Chasing Highs”, the crowd were left uplifted and excited.

A little further out from The Great Escape hub was live music venue ‘The Old Market’ which held host to some of the bigger emerging talents of the year. It was definitely worth the extra few minute journey to catch the brilliant Joel Baker.

Joel’s lyrics create such a visual picture on relatable coming of age topics, that are not short of some soul and groove. His warming stage presence and down to earth nature makes it all such easy-watching and listening and I definitely left the gig feeling a little lighter.

Newly signed to Polydor, this pocket rocket newcomer G-Flip bopped around the Beach Club stage with her shimmering pop tracks and infectious energy. Releasing just two tracks so far “Killing My Time” and ‘About You’ I look forward to hearing more releases from this Melbourne-raised drummer turned soloist.

Dermot Kennedy has been on repeat since I returned from The Great Escape. His strong soulful vocals cascading through The Beach Club Saturday afternoon, he mixes folk influences, humbling lyrics and elements of hip-hop are layered into his heavy production. Playing three times over the weekend, there was no way I couldn’t get myself down to a show and I’m so glad I did. A rising timeless act that is not one to miss this Summer.

It always nice stumbling across new music that you didn’t plan to discover or check out, easily done at such a diverse festival such as The Great Escape.

My new find this weekend was four-piece dreamy pop band Furs, they took to the Beach Club stage, on late Saturday afternoon. Bringing us a little 50’s and 60’s influences, similar to the likes of four piece Flyte and of course with sprinkles of The Beatles, it was a feel-good, easy listening set that had me pleasantly surprised.

My last gig of the weekend was Lewis Capaldi, and what a way to finish. We must all have Lewis on our radars this festival season. After supporting Sam Smith earlier this year, this guy intertwined his powerful ballads and a raspy vocal tone with a whole load of charisma and humour to Brighton’s music venue on the sea front ‘Coalition’. I’m excited to hear more releases from Lewis this year, a well as see him on his headline tour this winter. A real gem of an artist.

This was a totally memorable weekend in sunny Brighton. There were many more artists that smashed their sets over the weekend including Tom Tripp, Ady Suleiman, Sam Fender and more. I am excited to stumble across amazing new artists and catch some of my favourite musicians in the festival season ahead and update you all on my radar. If you are feeling a little FOMO from this year’s The Great Escape, early bird tickets for 2019 are on sale now!

Keep Tabs on The Great Escape:

Words by Jodie Brunning

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